The Douglas F3D Skyknight was the world's first jet fighter designed for use as carrier-based night fighter. Its radar equipment required a wider-than-usual fuselage, so it was nicknamed "Willie the Whale."
The Navy asked Douglas to develop a carrier-based night fighter in 1946. Specifications included twin-jet power, side-by-side seating for a radar operator, a top speed of 500 mph, a combat radius of 500 miles, an operating altitude of 40,000 feet, and an escape system that allowed the crew to depart downward through the bottom of the fuselage.
The result was the straight-wing, two-seat, twin-engine F3D. The first of 28 production-model F3D-1s was delivered to the Navy in late 1950, as work began on the more powerful F3D-2. The F3D-2 flew 100 mph faster and had twice the range. It incorporated new electronic and radar equipment, air-to-air rockets, a thicker bulletproof canopy, wing spoilers to improve rate-of-roll, and an automatic pilot. Info from Boeing.com
in the box
Having the Sword F3D-2 kit in the stash, I have based this review around that kit. The Matchbox replacement cockpit is as far as I can tell identical. The Matchbox kits detail in the cockpit is near enough non existant, so this set is ideal if you have this kit in your stash ( which I don't lol).
Packed in the normal Pavla blister pack, the set comprises of 15 resin parts to replace the cockpit of the Sword Skynight kit. All the parts are connected to a casting block, so care will be needed when removing the parts, as some are small and delicate.
Starting with the cockpit tub, the kits tub isn't bad as such, but the resin tub does have stronger detail. The side consoles in the resin part are also slighlty wider with some fine raised detail for the various controls.
The seats in the Sword kit are basic to say the least where the resin equivalents are much more detailed with a ribbed effect back cushion and a more pronouced bucket for the seat. Both the kits seats and the resin replacements both have seperate headrests, but the difference between the two in negilble.
The pilot and operator's seats in the cockpit are different so make sure you place the correct seat in the right place. The seats are also sold seperatly as item no - S 72084 .
Two instrument panels are supplied, which one you use I would think ( but it doesnt tell you in the instructions) is down to the aircraft type. Checking the kits instructions and checking your references should clarify.
The instrument panels are a lot more detailed then the kits one as the panels have raised and recessed dials and switches, compared to the plastic panel which just has recessed dials. Both resin panels come with a hood.
Rudder pedals are supplied to replace the rather bulky and flat kit offering.
A more slender control column finishes the cockpit detail.
Two small parts fit onto the rear cockpit shelf and are more detailed then the moulded on parts on the tub.
The instructions are a small two page black on white line drawing style with the build seqeunce over 9 steps. The build is easy to follow with generic paint names for the interior parts given along the way.
Item no - C 72125 for Sword kit. Item no - C 72124 for Matchbox kit. Price - £15.99 ( Hannants) for both sets.
Please remember, when contacting retailers or manufacturers, to mention that you saw their products highlighted here - on AEROSCALE
Highs: A nice set which will lift the detail in the cockpit.Lows: Costs nearly as much as the Sword base kitVerdict: With a large canopy too see through, the cockpit will benefit with the added detail this set comprises of.
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About Andy Brazier (betheyn) FROM: ENGLAND - SOUTH EAST, UNITED KINGDOM
I started modelling in the 70's with my Dad building Airfix aircraft kits. The memory of my Dad and I building and painting a Avro Lancaster on the kitchen table will always be with me. I then found a friend who enjoyed building models, and between us I think we built the entire range of 1/72 Airfi...